The temp dropped which was a real blessing. Add in the better shade and this stage was a lot cooler than Cumberland.
The trails were spectacular but much easier. I remembered many of the trails having ridden them backwards before and this was actually a big help. I knew when some of the climbs were happening and where some of the tricky bits were.
A few times I latched on to a wheel that was just a tad slower than I normally would have ridden, but stuck there keeping myself in check to not burn out.
Aloha trail was a hoot. Lots of people dressed up in Hawaiian gear, and a tiki bar serving drinks (shots of pineapple juice). Having seen pictures of this in previous years it was pretty surreal to be part of it this year.
Sue made her way around the course with the help of her dad and step mom so I got so see her a few times. Definitely a boost to have that extra personal cheer.
Nearing 51 Dodge I knew we were getting close to the last climb. I made my way up and near the crest we could hear some cheering. Another great cheering section complete with costumes and some shots of coke.
Then the start of the descent. I passed a bunch of people on the doubletrack and nearly wiped out on one rather loose section. Once in the road I figured we had it made, but there were a couple more hills hidden. On one I was standing and could feel that familiar quad burn.
A few more small trails and we ended up back on Willingdon trail and crossing the finish line. Another great, and dusty day in the saddle.
Powell River has such great community support, from disembarking the ferry, to the trail maintenance, to the cheering squads, to the other umpteen volunteers helping out, to a most amazing camping location. Lots of fun, and I can’t wait to get back and ride some more. 🙂